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Country is run by its rights and not by an individual’s will, says Uddhav Thackeray

Thackeray made these remarks in his speech at the inauguration of two new wings of the annexe building at the premises of the Aurangabad Bench of the Bombay High Court.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray. (File)

Reiterating concerns, which he voiced earlier about the erosion of the country’s federal system and the undermining of the state’s powers by the Centre, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray took an apparent dig at the Modi-led Central government with the remark that the country is run by laws and not the will of those in office.

Thackeray also made an oblique reference to the ongoing CBI enquiry against former state Home Minister Anil Deshmukh said the complainant had gone missing, but inquiries and raids were being conducted in Maharashtra.

Thackeray made these remarks in his speech at the inauguration of two new wings of the annexe building at the premises of the Aurangabad Bench of the Bombay High Court.

Apart from Thackeray, Union Minister for Law and Justice Kiren Rijiju, Chief Justice of India NV Ramana, Chief Justice of Bombay High Court Dipankar Datta and senior judges of Supreme court and High Court were also present.

“The celebration of freedom should not be limited to 75 years but this freedom is to be maintained permanently. If we feel slavery should not be in our destiny, then I humbly request that all the legal experts should discuss and guide us on the issue of Centre and states’ rights. What does freedom mean? Who has how many powers? Being in office means that your will cannot be your right. Your rights are different and your will is different. Someone should tell us,” the CM said.

Reiterating what he said at his Dussehra rally speech last week about the country’s democracy and federal structure, Thackeray asked: “What does the Constitution say about the Centre’s and states’ rights? At the time of making the Constitution, questions were raised by some experts on the powers of the states and the Centre. Babasaheb Ambedkar had clearly said that except few rights, the states too are sovereign like the Centre. Are we using our rights? Are these rights being encroached upon?”

Last week, Thackeray, during the party’s annual Dussehra rally, had attacked the Centre over its interference in state affairs and called for an open discussion on power-sharing between the two.

Without naming IPS officer Param Bir Singh, Thackeray took a dig at his absence after levelling allegations. “(Justice DY) Chandrachud Saheb, you mentioned that one accused has been absconding since 1958 and his case is still pending. Here (Maharashtra), the complainant is missing but the case is still going on. Nobody knows where the complainant has fled after levelling the allegations. But the allegations are being dug up and inquiries and raids are being conducted.

Whatever this method is, there is a need to bring a framework for it,” said CM.

He also spoke about crimes against women and said the government has decided to build shelters for the safety of homeless and orphan women and children. “As part of the decision, a survey has been commenced in Mumbai for the shelter of homeless and orphaned women and children that will help prevent injustice to such vulnerable groups,” he added.

He disclosed that the government would soon allocate land for a new building of the Bombay High Court. “So, today, I invite Chief Justice NV Ramana for the ground-breaking ceremony of the building. We will try to inaugurate the building in our term (in office),” he added.

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